Photographs from England 40 Years Ago – May 16, 1982

Both John and I think I wrote a letter to him every week when he started his new job in New York, but neither of us has a clear memory of it. For two years I had regularly written a letter a week, which he copied to send to our mothers and kept the original. There is a very slim possibility that he kept the last ones, but we haven’t found them.

The words have disappeared, but we still have a few photos from this time. One of my favorites was John $pencer taking things out of the cabinet. He got there on his own, perhaps by climbing on a toy. I wrote on the slide, “TROUBLE at work”.

In the back garden I took a shot of the children who played together the most – Kate, Philippa, and Lisa. This photo was on our Aura frame for a month, and I saw it at least ten times before I realized John $ was in it, too, standing in front of Philippa.

One day $ examined gravel, so Pippa and Kate flopped down to join him. One girl posed for the camera, and the other began to really look at the stones.

John was probably still with us when we went to Leith Hill. I don’t remember anything other than the huge rhododendrons in the garden.

This looks like an ad. What could the boy have been selling? Shoes? Children’s play clothes?

34 thoughts on “Photographs from England 40 Years Ago – May 16, 1982

    1. That photo came up on our Aura frame today, and I said for us it would be like standing on the edge of a counter at our own head height. $ was perfectly comfortable there. The only time I remember his falling was after climbing a ladder in the garage that I told him not to climb.

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      1. It would be comparable – that was high. I never had brothers or were around little boys, but it looks like $ was full of mischief. [My considerate neighbors are blaring music full blast and it is 11:45 p.m. – noise ordinance is for 11:00 p.m. – I don’t know exactly where it is coming from, behind me or the guy on the corner. I can’t open my metal blinds – they are stuck and I won’t open the front or back door to see. I am wearing earplugs now and the floor is shaking and I am seething.]


          1. I had to mention it to you since you have perfect neighbors. They shut it down by midnight finally and I got to bed by 12:30. I was trying to be better about getting more sleep, but figured why bother and I knew we were having possible severe weather this morning so I never even turned on the alarm – we got a bad storm and were slated for another, more severe, storm this evening. There was a tornado in Michigan yesterday, 250 miles from me. Two killed, 44 injured, 1 missing – a lot of damage. Very scary – an E3 with 149 mph winds.


            1. That is scary! There was hail two towns over today. David drove through the place on the way to work, and he said there were piles of small hail stones everywhere. I wish I could have seen that.

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              1. Yes, very! I once drove to the allergist two miles from home to get an allergy shot. In those days it was walk-in only. I went after I got home from work, so around 6:00-ish. It was sunny when I l left the house, not humid or stormy looking in the least and enroute to the allergist’s office it began hailing. The sky was suddenly dark and gray and it was pelting the car like crazy and it ended up with faint dents in it the rest of its years. Hope David’s new car was okay and not damaged


                  1. Thank goodness – I was horrified to be out in a hailstorm when I never took my car out in bad weather … period. I’m sure David would have had some anxious moments.


                    1. You are right. David would not have liked hail hitting his car. The car would not have been protected at home, either. We and our children have filled the garages with household items.

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                    2. My car was burgundy and David’s is black – I think the darker colors would show the pitted hail marks worse than light-colored paint. You don’t have basements there? My basement is way too cluttered and the garage is barely big enough to fit the car in as I have put shelving units along the one wall. It is more organized in the garage than any room in the house (which is not saying much about me).


                    3. That is interesting – a fact I didn’t know about sitting on rock. I’d have to use my garage as well then. The basement clutter began when my mother, who was a perfect housekeeper, (unlike her daughter), didn’t want anything out of place upstairs, so she said “take it downstairs and find a place for it.” This applied to many things and Mom didn’t go downstairs the last five or so years of her life, so had no idea how much was down there. Now there is clutter upstairs and I wonder how two people and a bird lived here and it was immaculate? I ponder that a lot.


                    4. Don’t worry about clutter unless you can’t get from one room to another. Life is too short.

                      ALL of my drawers are in shambles, and I haven’t made time to clean them. I hope I make myself do that this coming winter. Right now I’m spending time in the garden.

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                    5. Agreed – I look around and give it a dismissive wave of my hand like Scarlett O’Hara did in GWTW. I have a few friends through the years who suffered from serious health problems and they said the same thing – life is too short and meant to be lived.

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